Until Christmas Eve in the morning, Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson were skeptical about the chances of a deal.
The wildlife divorce between the European Union and the United Kingdom is becoming more realistic. Fortunately, a compromise was reached in the afternoon. Politicians were afraid of the dire consequences of mutual obstinacy. This made them think of the misery of thousands of drivers on vacation, especially TIRs, who are trapped when crossing a ferry and tunnel across the English / English Channel. The paralysis of the UK-France border, caused by the SARS-CoV-2 mutation, is unfortunate but nonetheless. Without an agreement, such a situation would become a catastrophic rule from January 1, 2021.
A contract closed with a tape measure called trade and cooperation. It covers 1,246 pages, 409 of which are text only, and 837 are detailed appendices and protocols. For our part, it was concluded by two separate entities, namely, the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community, and on the island – the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The latter part is of great significance because the dispute over the status of British remnants on the island of Ireland (which includes six counties in Ulster) has become one of the mines blowing up the entire deal.
But at the end of the negotiations, the biggest disagreement was not the status of Northern Ireland, but the fishing industry. The annual income of the industry in the UK is around £ 780 million, which is just 0.1%. Gross domestic product. So the problem is certainly not economic, but political and honorary. The British Economic Area is rich in fish, but according to EU fishing quotas, most of it goes to the nets of fishermen from France, Benelux, Spain and Denmark. Leaving the European Union would enable London to gain complete control of British waters. By the way, in the 2016 Brexit referendum, residents of coastal provinces, for which not only fishing is important, but also the maritime economy in general, strongly supported leaving the European Union. Therefore, when it comes to quotas, Prime Minister Boris Johnson should not reveal them. The most important component of the settlement became the transition period – 5.5 years. The British offered access to the European Union fleet for 3 years, while the European Union wanted … 14.
Due to the delay, the legislative path of the agreement will be unnatural. The British Parliament will have time to ratify it by New Year’s Eve, especially as the opposition Labor Party supports the civilization of Brexit. Boris Johnson has trouble with a group of Conservative lawmakers who, after compromise, have recognized their prime minister as something called a crumb. The procedures on our part will be more complicated, because by December 31, the agreement will be approved only by the Ministerial Council of the European Union, that is, the second legislative chamber. The European Parliament does not meet until January 18-21, 2021, after which it will vote. But this is not the end, an agreement of this importance must also be ratified by all member states of the European Union according to their procedures. There shouldn’t be any problems in parliaments, but for example, Ireland has a habit of sending important ratifications to the referendum, and the Christmas Eve agreement is of the utmost importance to this republic. At the moment, it can be said that peace between the European Union and Britain as of January 1, thanks to creative explanations, will actually come into effect, so that businessmen and all interested citizens can breathe. However, legally on the part of the European Union, that will be temporary at first.